Bandicoot Species

Bandicoot Rat

BANDICOTA BENGALENSIS

Appearance

  • Large rat-like rodent, up to 40 cm including tail
  • Dorsally dark brown fur
  • Light to dark grey fur ventrally
  • Head body length about 25cm
  • Long and scaly tail uniformly dark and shorter than head-body length
  • Adults of both sexes have a smell which is similar to pigs
  • Blunt muzzle
  • When cornered, the bandicoot rat erects is bristles and spits like a cat.

Lifecycle

  • Bandicoot rats have a rapid rate of reproduction, the usual age of first breeding is at 3 months, the average number of litter being 7, breeding season all year round with a peak in spring.
  • Bandicoot rats are quite aggressive even against individuals of the same species and dig extensive burrows. Each burrow will only be inhabited by one bandicoot rat.

Habits

  • Bandicoot rats are often living in scrub lands and jungles, but are also common in villages and towns
  • They are considered as one of the most damaging agricultural pests, as they hoard a lot of grains in their burrows.
  • Originally grain feeders, they often change their diet according to availability and can also change their diet totally to animal matter
  • Bandicoot rates have been known to attack poultry and are seen as a threat to infants as a group of them can easily attack and devour a child.